I graduated from the University of Iowa in 1995. Go Hawkeyes!
I entered the education field straightaway as a Kindergarten teacher. However, I only taught Kindergarten for one year. Not because I didn’t love those little ones, but it was my first job and in a Preschool-Kindergarten Daycare setting, without health benefits. I took the job to “get my feet wet” with teaching experience, I knew I wanted to get into a public school environment as soon as possible.
My second year of teaching, was actually as a substitute teacher in the district that has become my “home” for the last 17 years (soon to be 18 years). I took a permanent sub position in a Primary Cross-Categorical classroom for of a half year (due to a maternity leave) to get my foot in the door in a public school. When the homeroom teacher returned, I continued an additional permanent subbing position in a first grade classroom (yet, another maternity leave) at a different school in the district (Thanks to all of those pregnant Mamas in the district!). Fortunately, the principal in that school observed me more than a handful of times (talk about pressure!) and offered me a full-time first grade position for the following year. (THANK YOU!) I stayed in first grade for two additional years at that particular school, and enjoyed myself very much. Needless to say, I was very grateful for a full-time teaching position... with health benefits!
Nevertheless, when a second grade opening became available at, yet again, another school in the district (which is where I still reside), I snatched it up! Exploring new territory is a great way to grow professionally, you know. Nine out of the fourteen years at my school, I taught second grade. I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED second grade! The reason I say “LOVED” in past tense, is because five years ago, I switched out of the classroom and became a Reading Specialist. This upcoming school year will be my 19th year in education, but only my 6th year as a Reading Specialist. I still get to work with the little people that make me smile and laugh daily, but I also get to follow my true passion, which is being a specialist of Reading. Hence, I’m enjoying the best of both worlds at school. :)